It doesn't matter how good your line-delivery is, and the magnitude of your screen presence will only take you so far. The spark that is needed to ignite widespread fame is just one role. For the swarthy Australian actor, that spark would be a short, angry, adamantium infused comic book character with a fondness for cigars and the word 'bub.' Though he stands a foot taller than the 5'3" Wolverine from the X-Men, Hugh Jackman pulled off the portrayal well enough to wow American audiences and garner attention from a slew of producers and directors.
He started his career by first turning down a leading role in the popular Australian soap-opera, Neighbours, and went on to star in many serious dramatic roles. Upon graduating from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Jackman was offered the role of inmate Kevin Jones on the Australian prison drama, Corelli. He first met his future wife, Deborra-Lee Furness, on the set playing her romantic interest. Their onscreen romance between a prisoner and a psychologist manifested in the real world with a much healthier result. Jackman's natural presence also made him a popular choice for talk shows and award ceremonies. Not to be typecast, Jackman used his considerable skills at singing to play the role of Gaston in the Melbourne production of the musical, Beauty and the Beast. It was only when the shooting for Mission Impossible 2 ran long that international fame knocked on Hugh Jackman's door. He was called in at the last minute to play Wolverine when the originally slated actor, Dougray Scott, was held on the set of MI2. Jackman's performance amazed critics, audiences, and even die-hard fans of the comic book, which is arguably the most incredible accomplishment.
Again belying any one-dimensional limitations to his future roles, Jackman went on to star in the romantic comedy, Kate & Leopold, opposite Meg Ryan. His other roles in American film are not too outstanding but he has reprised his role for the current sequel, X2. While it certainly is an exceptional acting job, hopefully it is only a step in this accomplished and skilled actor's career that will span decades. So far, Jackman has been lucky enough to star alongside the lovely and also skilled actress, Halle Berry, in three films; X-Men 1 and 2 and Swordfish.
Filmography & Theatrical